By Carey Purcell
04 Dec 2013
|Photo by Joan Marcus|
Richard III and Twelfth Night, which are performed in repertory, officially opened Nov. 10 at the Belasco Theatre, following respective preview performances that began Oct. 15 and 19. The all-male casts are headed by two-time Tony winner Mark Rylance. They had previously been scheduled to continue through Feb. 1 and Feb. 2, 2014, respectively.
The productions are directed by Tim Carroll and feature Rylance (Jerusalem, Boeing-Boeing) as Richard Duke of Gloucester and Olivia in the respective plays. Rylance shares the stage with Stephen Fry and Samuel Barnett.
Joining Rylance, Fry and Barnett are many members of the Shakespeare's Globe and West End casts, including Liam Brennan (Orsino in Twelfth Night and Clarence and Lord Mayor in Richard III), Paul Chahidi (a 2013 Olivier Award nominee for Best Actor in a Supporting Role for Maria in Twelfth Night and Hastings and Tyrell in Richard III), John Paul Connolly (Antonio in Twelfth Night and 1st Murderer, Cardinal, Ratcliff and Halberdier in Richard III), Peter Hamilton Dyer (Feste in Twelfth Night and Brakenbury and Catesby in Richard III), Colin Hurley (Sir Toby Belch in Twelfth Night and King Edward IV and Stanley in Richard III) and Jethro Skinner (Fabian in Twelfth Night and 2nd Murderer, Messenger and Halberdier in Richard III).
|photo by Joan Marcus|
"Richard Duke of Gloucester (Mark Rylance) is determined that he should wear the crown of England," press notes state about Richard III. "He has already dispatched one king and that king’s son; now all that stands in his way are two credulous brothers and two helpless nephews — the Princes in the Tower. And woe betide those – the women he wrongs, the henchmen he betrays — who dare to raise a voice against him. Monstrous, but theatrically electric, Richard is Shakespeare’s most charismatic, self-delighting villain, reveling at every moment in his homicidal, hypocritical journey to absolute power."
Here's how Twelfth Night is billed: "While the lovelorn Duke Orsino plots to win the heart of the mourning Olivia, an alliance of servants and hangers-on scheme against the high handedness of Olivia’s steward, the pompous Malvolio. When Orsino engages the cross-dressed Viola, who has disguised herself as a young man under the name Cesario, to plead with Olivia on his behalf, a bittersweet and hilarious chain of events follows."
The productions are designed by Jenny Tiramani with music by Claire van Kampen.
Tickets, a performance schedule and more information can be found by visiting shakespearebroadway.com.